How To Detect Hearing Troubles In Your Child?
Created by Ambili S Kartha Updated on Feb 13, 2019
In the first few years of life, as we all know, hearing is a significant part of a child's social, emotional, and cognitive development. Lots of things he learns through sounds. Even a mild or partial hearing loss can affect a child's ability to develop speech and language properly. Hearing loss can happen at any time,
If you have any doubt at all about your baby or child's hearing, get your child's hearing screened early and checked regularly. The good news is that hearing problems can be overcome if they're caught early. And with close watching the hearing issue of the newborn can be detected around three months itself. The earlier hearing loss is identified and treated, obviously, it will be beneficial for the development of language and learning skills of the child.
What Causes Hearing Trouble In Children?The hearing trouble with babies can be temporary or permanent. The temporary hearing trouble in children is usually due to:
- Accumulation of ear wax
- Infection in middle ear
- Excess mucus in Eustachian tube (due to cold)
- The child born before the term
- Mothers if had disease like German measles during the gestation period, will have increased chances of giving birth to babies with hearing issues
- Injuries, such as concussion or skull fracture
- Hereditary. Sometimes, abnormal development of inner ear runs in the family
- Genetic disorders
- Expose to loud sound or noise (even for a brief time) like firecrackers and even a high volt sound system
- If the baby contracts, certain diseases like mumps and meningitis, it can affect their hearing
Is there any test that evaluates the hearing of a newborn?Your newborn should have a hearing screening before being discharged from the hospital. This screening helps to identify children born with a hearing loss. However, the number of people who have hearing loss doubles between birth and the teen years. Therefore, it's important to have kids' hearing checked on a regular basis as they grow. Another important fact is that even if your child does not pass the hearing screening, it doesn't necessarily mean the baby has a hearing loss. However, it's important to get a retest within 3 months, so treatment can begin right away.
How to detect hearing troubles in children?Before detecting signs of hearing issue with your child, it's easier to see if he hears things properly.
0 to 8 weeks of ageGet stunned or widens the eyes at sudden, nearby noises. The baby will wake up or stir on sleep at the sound.
8 weeks to 4 monthsStare towards the direction of sound
6 to 12 monthsTurns head towards familiar voices or sounds and around this period the baby starts to babble
12 to 18 monthsBy this time, the child understands the names of the favorite toys, begins to mimic simple words and sounds
18 to 24 monthsThe child develops a small vocabulary of single words and can understand and respond to simple directions, such as give me the book, take this, come here, sit there, etc
2 ½ to 3 ½ yearsThe child develops clear speech with a good vocabulary. If your child is able to do aforementioned things, your child has no issue with hearing.
What are the signs that the child has hearing issues?Contact the doctor if you notice any of these red flags:
- The child will not enjoy action songs
- The child will not be able to follow simple instructions like "come here", "take that book and give it to me", etc.
- The child will not turn his or her head in response to sounds coming from another room
- The child will not recognize the names of familiar people, pets, and objects
- The child will not imitate simple words
1 ½ - 2 Years:
- The child will not enjoy story reading sessions
- The child will not reply with "yes" or "no" to a question or command
- The child will not say more than five words
2-2 ½ Years:
- The child doesn't respond when called
- The child complains of a ringing sound in their ears
- The child always watches the television with the volume turned up too high
- The child will talk too loudly
What are the treatment options for hearing trouble in children?The treatment option depends on the cause and age of the child. It varies from a simple wax removal to hearing aids to cochlear implantation and speech therapy.
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